We dogs are wonderful creatures, and humans know a lot about us, but there’s still a lot more to discover. In this new series, we share some of the science that makes its way to us from facts to research. This is Dog Science with Mia’s comments.
A dog’s nose is like a human fingerprint, completely unique and individual so it can be used to identify them.
Mia says: why do they put chips in us then instead of using our noseprints?
Dogs have 1,700 taste buds compared to humans who have 9,000 but a dog’s sense in smell is up to 1 million times stronger than a human’s.
Mia says: in other words, we are using our skills to smell things, not to taste them. Sounds like a lot of sense!
Dogs can see in the dark due to a special membrane in their eyes called the tapetum lucidum.
Mia says: this is Latin for bright carpet. Talk about wicked humour!
Dogs release oxytocin (the love hormone) in their brains when they interact with dogs and humans, and so do humans as well. (Fun fact: in both species females more than males.)
Mia says: in short, we make each other happy and loved.
Dog’s curl up so that they can protect their vital organs when asleep. Fun fact: dogs also dream.
Mia says: and I have great dreams. Not just about running on the field, or being with Missy but I’m sometimes a superhero, other times a mother, or a leader – I’ve even dreamt about being a human!
Dogs have 18 muscles controlling their ears.
Mia says: They don’t always do want I want though, so sometimes I end up with this adorable combination of one ear up, one ear down.
The earliest fossils of dogs date back to 30,000 B.C., more common from 14,000 years ago.
Mia says: Basically we go way back. It’s the longest of long-term relationships.
A study at UCSD claims that your dog can genuinely get jealous when they see you display affection for another creature.
Mia says: Not sure why they needed a study for this, this is completely natural. My human is MY human, full stop.
A dog could be left or right-pawed.
Mia says: Now this is new! We’ll dedicate some time in the future finding this out.
Yawning is contagious—even for dogs. Research shows that the sound of a human yawn can trigger one from your dog. And it’s four times as likely to happen when it’s the yawn of a person he knows.
Mia says: Also, yawning doesn’t always mean I’m sleepy. It’s sometimes a distraction, to show others I’m not a threat, and I’m not scared, other times it’s me feeling relaxed.
Fido, Abraham Lincoln’s dog, was also assassinated (but a year later than the president himself.)
What are your favourite fun fact about dogs or other pets? What were you always wondering about?
2 thoughts on “10+1 facts that not all humans know about dogs”
Just yesterday one of Mickey’s trainers told me about the yawning! We were talking about how dogs shake off stress, and I asked if they yawn to release stress as well (like ferrets do), and she said they do, and told me how our yawning can make a dog yawn too! Mickey releases stress in training by shaking (I don’t mean like nerves, shivering, I mean like when shaking off water) a lot. The yawns are when the cats are stressing him out.
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Interesting, before they got friendly, Mia yawned a lot around the cat, too!